Yukon College Home Research & Innovation Enhancing knowledge transfer to decision-makers with respect to climate change impacts

Enhancing knowledge transfer to decision-makers with respect to climate change impacts

Enhancing knowledge transfer to decision-makers with respect to climate change impacts

Alison Perrin

The goal of this proejct was to identify and understand the snow- and permafrost-related information needs of practitioners in the mining and transportation sectors in northern Canada, specifically in the Yukon and the Northwest Territories, and to produce knowledge products that respond to a subset of those needs to encourage adaptation to climate change.

Mining and transportation practitioners from various backgrounds identified the need for:

  • Case studies of infrastructure failures and adaptations
  • Easily accessible and tailored climate hazards-related information
  • Guidance on how the complex interplay of climate elements such as snow and permafrost, rain on snow, etc.
  • Practical and user-friendly climate-change guidance and tools including best practices, outreach materials, financial justifications for adaptation, etc.
  • Accessible training on climate and weather impacts, permafrost, and other related topics for practitioners and decision-makers.

The project resulted in the develpment of a web-based tool that responds to the need for case studies of infrastructure failures and adaptations, with the ultimate goal of providing information that will help practitioners incorporate successful adaptations. The Climate and Infrastructure Forensic Analysis System (CIFAS) is both an online database of infrastructure and climate events, and a forensic analysis system. The system is populated with events affecting infrastructure in northern Canada and the climate, infrastructure and engineering data surrounding those events, as well as adaptations that were applied both successfully and unsuccessfully. The second product is a set of case studies and automated reports that are an extension of the first product, CIFAS. The case studies are guidance documents to show how CIFAS can be used to generate an in-depth case study of an infrastructure failure, with the goal of identifying adaptation options to prevent those failures in the future.

Perrin, A., Eng, S., Sparling, E., Auld, H., Comer, N., Bevington, A., Kinnear, L., 2015. Enhancing knowledge transfer to decision-makers with respect to climate change impacts on the cryosphere. Northern Climate ExChange, Yukon Research Centre, Yukon College, 128 p.